James is a professional, more or less, so he doesn't let himself think about it while the cameras are on. Or even when they're off, really, because there are about thirty people standing around, some of them expressly for the purpose of watching what he's doing, and he doesn't dare let himself indulge until everyone's cleared out of the Man Lab at the end of the day. They've left him there on his own under the pretext of finishing up an email he supposedly has half-written on his laptop, but rather than go back up to his office the first thing James does after shutting the door and locking it is sink down onto the couch and put his head in his hands.
He can see every moment of the day's torture, almost as vividly as if it were happening right now: the long arch of Sim's neck as he'd tipped the welding visor down over his face, the sly curl of his mouth when they'd set up the foosball game for the first time, the way his hand had curled around the joystick grip of the goalie and the way the muscles of his forearm flexed as he twisted it sideways to make a save.
James has spent the whole day trying not to watch too closely, trying not to think about how much he wants those hands on him. Wants them on his skin, on his cock, on the backs of his thighs spreading him open, and Christ, he's half hard already just from thirty seconds of indulging his imagination at last. James closes his eyes, slides one hand down his chest to cup himself through his trousers. "Fuck," he says, grinding the heel of his palm down over the growing bulge. "Fuck, Simmy..." He doesn't mean to say that last out loud, and it comes out more like a plea than anything else, a little helpless, a little broken.
It's a terrible idea to let himself indulge, even now that he's alone, because he knows it'll just make him feel all the more desperate and lonely later, when he's at home in the dark and there isn't even a spanner needing polishing to distract him. But he can't help himself.
He keeps his eyes shut and grasps his cock more firmly, squeezing it and then grinding down again, the denim shuddering rough over the cotton of his pants and the sensitive skin beneath. He can smell the workshop half of the Man Lab from here, sawdust and oil and a faint hint of something burnt that shouldn't have been. This is what Sim smells like, James knows, this and coal tar soap and a tinge of musky something, maybe aftershave, maybe just shampoo – they've stood close enough for that, too many times to count, and every single time he'd had to stop himself from breathing in, from trying to memorize that scent.
God, he really is pathetic.
Somehow this thought is more effective than denial at blunting the edge of the arousal he's been fighting with all day. He drops his hand, and opens his eyes.
And then his heart almost stops, because Sim is standing by the Man Lab bar, his hip cocked against the edge of it and his eyes locked on James.
Shit! James thinks. How long has he been there? "I— I was—" he stutters, trying to come up with a plausible excuse and failing utterly. "Er—" Any second now Sim is surely going to call him out on what he was doing. Kindly, of course, because Sim's not an arsehole, but it probably won't be much less humiliating for that.
"You still have that forfeit," Sim says. This is so far from what James is expecting that it takes him a moment to parse it. Right, the forfeit. They'd bet on the foosball match, of course they had, just like they'd bet on any number of things over the last couple of years. It had been the usual stakes: winner gets to choose a forfeit of anything, really, providing it's not too humiliating or potentially injurious. They've each won about half the time and called in the forfeit for various things, half practical and half amusing. Sometimes one or the other of them has plumped for an expensive bottle of scotch, or made the other wear something ridiculous for a day, or secured assistance for one of their personal projects that needs a spare pair of hands.
Only the way Sim says it, it sure as hell doesn't sound like he means he's planning to come round on Sunday to put up James' new garden shed. James stares at him blankly; it's not like he hasn't had a fantasy or two (or twenty) over the years about calling in that forfeit for something more creative, but that can't be what Sim means. Can't be.
"I could help you with that," Sim says, tipping his head back in an unmistakable invitation, and it's so much like a line from a terrible porn film that James bursts into shocked laughter.
"Yeah, all right," Sim says, shaking his head. He's smiling a little, like he can't help himself. "That was fucking rubbish, I suppose." But there's a flash of uncertainty in his eyes, like even having caught James wanking with Sim's name on his lips isn't enough of a sign of a sure thing. That uncertainty eases James' panic a little, makes him believe, for the first time, that maybe this isn't a put on.
He shoves himself up off the sofa before he can think about it too hard and start freaking out again. It will only take him four steps to get close enough to touch, and so he takes them, crosses the space and presses the fingertips of one hand to Sim's wrist.
"How— how long were you watching me?" he asks.
"All day," says Sim, breathlessly.
Two seconds later they're kissing, hot and desperate. Sim's mouth is soft, seductive, and he parts his lips almost immediately, letting James slip his tongue between them. He smells good, like all the things James remembers, and he tastes like garlic and cheese from the pizza they'd had at lunch time. James groans and sucks on Sim's bottom lip, scrapes his teeth over it, and Sim's hands come up to fist themselves in James' hair.
James has no idea how they've managed to go from zero to tongue-fucking in less than sixty seconds without actually talking about anything at all, but he doesn't care. He puts his hands on Sim's waist, slides them up under the edge of his thermal undershirt until he can touch skin, warm and smooth and a little bit hairy. Sim's khakis are hanging low on his hips and James' hands slide easily into place in the small of his back, tracing the divot of his spine. Sim breathes out, hard, a puff of air that James captures in his own mouth, tastes and swallows.
"God," Sim says, his mouth forming the word against James' lips. "Oh, god."
James' blood is pulsing in his veins, a slow throb through his whole body from top to cock to toe. He shoves their hips together, letting his growing hardness press against Sim's thigh. Sim kisses him harder, hot and slick and demanding. His glasses are smushed against James' nose and after a moment he whips them off and chucks them down onto the pool table. Then he twists sideways until James is pressed back against the table, the rounded lip digging into the small of his back. James groans and gives himself up to it, slides his fingers down under the waistband of Sim's khakis to the curve of his arse and hangs on.
They kiss and kiss again, rutting against each other almost savagely, until finally James has to break away just to breathe.
"Sim," he moans, and he's shocked to hear how desperate he sounds.
"Can I—" Sim asks. He slides his hands down over James' chest, pausing long enough to thumb a nipple, and then down to the waistband of James' jeans.
"Yes," James says, and then, "Please."
Sim unfastens the button of the jeans and draws the zip down in one smooth movement, then shoves James' briefs down just far enough to get his hand wrapped around James' cock.
"Christ," James hisses. He has to brace his elbows on the edge of the table to keep from falling over. Sim's palm is callused, his fingers rough from years of wielding tools, and it feels amazing where they touch, like nerve endings James didn't even know he had are sparking into life.
"You've got such a gorgeous cock," Sim says, wanking him slowly. His voice is low, almost crooning. He lifts his hand just long enough to spit into his palm, then curls his fingers around James' cock again. "I knew you would have. As gorgeous as the rest of you." He's half-straddling James now, weight pushing him back against the table.
"Can't wait for you to fuck me," Sim says, sounding breathless. James can feel Sim's cock pressed against him, hot even through two layers of fabric. "D' you want to?"
"Yes," James says. "Yes, god—if we had anything I'd bend you over this table right now." Sim's hand clenches convulsively around him before easing off again, and James groans, rocking his hips up into the motion.
"Next time," Sim promises with a grin, a flash of white against the flushed red of his lips. "Next time. Fuck, James—" He's wanking James even more slowly now, each stroke a thorough down and up with a twist of his wrist to bring his thumb over the slit every so often. James can't stop watching Sim's hand on his cock, tanned and male and rough, can't stop thinking about Sim fucking himself on those fingers, opening himself up slick and wide for James to slide in. He puts his hand on Sim's wrist, not to stop him but just to feel the movement of sinew under skin as Sim fists his cock, slick and achingly slow.
"Close," he warns, unsteady, and none too soon. Orgasm wells up from that place behind his navel, a slow crescendo of pleasure that rises and rises and then peaks suddenly as he comes with a cry, pulsing hot and thick over Sim's knuckles.
Sim carries him through it, his hand steady, resting just where it's curled around James' cock, until suddenly the feeling of being touched there is just too much and James pulls him away. James doesn't let go of Sim's arm, though – instead he slides his hand upwards, all the way up over Sim's shoulder until he can curl his hand around the back of Sim's neck and reel him in for a kiss.
When they stop kissing this time, Sim's eyes are dark and dazed. "What now?" he asks. His eyes are locked on James' mouth with a gratifying sort of attention.
James was just about to ask himself that same question. But then an answer occurs to him and he smirks. "I still have my forfeit," he says.
"That didn't count?" asks Sim, raising an eyebrow. His hips jerk forward in an abortive movement – he's obviously trying not to rub off too blatantly against James' thigh. Even more obviously, he's not succeeding.
"Certainly not," James says. He runs a hand up under Sim's shirt and strokes his fingertip over Sim's left nipple, getting a breathless groan in response. "I never said I was calling it in, not yet. Though I do have an idea or two for things I've been wanting to do that could use an extra pair of hands."
"Well then," says Sim. "By all means."